post 418

i’m going to japan! actually korea and japan. the plan is to fly from chicago to seoul and hang out for a day or so. then we’ll take a train across korea from seoul to busan and spend another day or so. from busan there is a ferry that crosses the korea strait to fukuoka, japan. we’ll spend a few days in northern kyushu checking out places like fukuoka, nagasaki, and saebo, and then take a train up through hiroshima, kyoto, and on to tokyo. from there i’ll fly back to seoul and then back to chicago.

i’m really, really excited about the trip. in the nights since i bought the plane ticket i’ve been having bizarre dreams about flying and being in foreign lands. it’ll be great to finally put my passport and the six years of japanese classes i took to use. and i’m flying business class, so the crazy-long plane ride should be at least bearable, if not friggin’ awesome.

post 417

dear web developers,

if you, for any reason, use javascript on a website to disable right-click functionality, you are a fool.

you probably implemented such code in a misguided attempt to prevent people from viewing your client-side source, or from saving off your images in order to be used elsewhere. while this may foil a 7th grader, there are plenty of ways to circumvent your effort, the easiest of which is probably just turning off javascript.

in reality, all you’ve really accomplished is annoying people like me who habitually use the back and forward buttons on the right-click menu.

in order to keep my life as annoyance-free as possible, once i find such a site i will simply use the back button on my browser’s tool bar and then never, ever return.

so, in summation, if you think driving away visitors (i.e. potential customers or at least ad viewers) is an acceptable price to pay for an ineffectual attempt to protect your copyright, then by all means keep it up.

kris knigga

post 416

today was the first nice day out in a long time. it was cold, but not bitterly so, and the sun was out and the sky was blue. what better way to enjoy it than a motorcycle ride? the odometer rolled over 2000 and i hit a big puddle that i completely underestimated and my legs got soaked. the bike needs a good wash now, but that’ll have to wait until it is much warmer out.

post 415

in the past 12 months (less than that, actually), i’ve been able to strike three states from my “yet to visit” list: arkansas, georgia, and washington. i’ve now been to 21 states in total.

post 414

i think eau de jet-a exhaust would make an incredibly sexy women’s perfume.

post 413

as mentioned in the previous post, i bought a motorcycle. a 2006 triumph america, to be exact. pictures.

i had been wanting a motorcycle for a long time. the first step, obviously, is to get a license. i did that last fall with no real plans to get a bike any time soon. but, after i got the license i started thinking it a waste to not exercise my new-found privilege and started half-seriously looking.

i knew i didn’t want a japanese bike, nor did i want a harley. while harleys seem to be decent enough motorcycles, there is something cult-like about that brand of which i want no part. after narrowing the field, i decided that i wanted a triumph america. there is a triumph dealer very close to my new place i bought last november, so i had been around there looking at their stock and the americas grew on me pretty quickly.

after my first-time home buyer’s tax credit came in this past spring i started looking a little more seriously. i inquired around about the availability of used bikes, but it seemed that there just weren’t many around and i really didn’t want to spend the money for a brand-new motorcycle, especially as a new rider, so motorcycle thoughts got pushed to the back burner.

then, in late june i was just killing some time on a sunday evening on ebay when i found it. the original owner posted that he bought it just before his wife became pregnant with triplets and therefore had no time to ride it. despite being four years old, it only had ~170 miles on it. it looked great in the pictures and what he was asking was in my price range. so, later that week i had my first ride on public streets when i went gave the bike a test drive. it had some weird electrical issues with the turn signals due to some shoddy wiring from when the guy had installed custom rear lights, but otherwise it was in perfect condition. after checking it out i really, really wanted it, so i talked the guy down on price a bit and then told him i’d be back to pick it up the next saturday. and so i did, and had my second ride on public streets when i rode it the 35-ish miles from where it was back to my place.

when i picked it up it had 176 miles on the odometer. right now, two months later, it has 1379 miles on it.

post 412

i’ve had my motorcycle for about two months now. (in other news, i bought a motorcycle. more on this at 11.) here is a collection of thoughts about the motorcycle and riding that i’ve gathered so far:

  • make all reasonable efforts to raise your helmet’s face shield before sneezing
  • one does not truly appreciate the effect of wind chill until having ridden a motorcycle
  • most people suck at driving
  • random strangers suddenly want to talk to me about my bike and motorcycles in general. this has happened at work, at church, at the gas station, at the hardware store, and at a red light on a highway
  • filling up your gas tank for $10 is a great feeling
  • running out of gas and having to switch to reserves while on the interstate is a little scary
  • if oddly textured roadway feels funny in a car, try it on a bike

post 411

i really, really hate it when services that require a username and password do some sort of decency check on the username you try to pick. i generally try to use some combination of bits of my first, middle, and last name for usernames, which means usernames most generally end up containing the string “nigga”. this, apparently, is a major affront to many companies.

the situation generally plays out like this: i find a service i’m interested in and start the registration process, during the registration process i’m asked to pick a username, and then when i’m done filling out the form and hit submit i get an error that says that the username i chose is not available. ok, while i find it odd that any username made up of bits of my first, middle, and last name is taken, i try again with some other permutation. again, the username is unavailable. this cycle repeats two or three more times until i’m convinced they just think my last name is a dirty word.

the first time i ran into this problem that i can remember was registering for aol when i was in 9th grade. later on, google implemented the same policy for gmail. last week i found that windows live also is disgusted by my last name. now, i sort of understand when free services, especially socially-centered services, like aol, gmail, and windows live do this. they don’t want some wannabe thugs picking offensive usernames and then harassing people. it’s annoying, but i sort of understand. what i don’t understand, though, is what happened to me today. i just recently switched from comcast to at&t for home phone and internet access, so today i was signing up for online account management with at&t and they pulled the same stunt. this is not an account that is used for anything but managing my home phone service. it’s not used for an email address, message board, online gaming, or anything else that would cause it to be seen by anyone but me and possibly some folks at at&t, so i’m not sure what the fuss is about. but, at least they had the decency to actually say why my chosen username was being rejected instead of just saying it is unavailable.

post 410

i had an epiphany the other day: apple and anheuser-busch are a whole lot alike. the business model for both is simply to find a solid product that appeals mainly to a niche audience, water it down so that it is acceptable to the general public, and then market the ever-living crap out of it. really, deep down, apple is not a consumer electronics company and anheuser-busch is not a beer company; they are both simply marketing companies who exist solely to sell as much of whatever as possible.

post 409

posted from my new motorola droid.